From AB4AL and the North Bay Amateur Radio Association
A phishing scheme currently afoot has been targeting ARRL members who have signed up for the ARRL E-Mail Forwarding Service and have an @arrl.net e-mail alias. An e-mail from “Arrl Webmail Admin” with the subject line “ACCOUNT UPGRADE” was received September 25 by an unknown number of members who use @arrl.net e-mail aliases. The e-mail, which requests that recipients reply by providing their usernames and passwords, did not come from the ARRL, and anyone receiving this sort of message should delete it and not reply. The ARRL would never distribute an e-mail requesting personal information.
“ARRL is aware of this phishing scheme and is working to block the sender’s e-mail address at our upstream provider,” said Andy Shefrin, KB1YHB, ARRL’s IT Infrastructure & Operations Manager. “As with any e-mails of unknown origin, do not open or reply.” Simply replying to this e-mail alerts the sender that your e-mail address is valid.
The bogus message indicates that access to @arrl.net account holders is being “removed” and accounts “upgraded to a new enhanced web mail user interface provided by arrl.net.” Recipients are being asked to provide usernames and passwords “to ensure your e-mail address book is saved in our database.” This is clearly an effort to harvest @arrl.netsubscriber information and valid e-mail addresses.
Ignore any message of this sort that seeks to have recipients provide any sensitive information, such as usernames, account numbers, and passwords. If you experience any problem with e-mail forwarding, send details to the ARRL IT Department.
Our old friend and one of the original members of the silverado amateur radio society, Bill, AC6FJ (WB6MRB) passed away on August 22nd. Bill was an active particpant in all of the SARS events, quick with a smile and a handshake and is sorely missed. Additional details in the Napa Register.
Napa Register September 16
Amateur Radio Vanity Call Sign Fee to Disappear in September
The Amateur Radio vanity call sign regulatory fee is set to disappear in the next few weeks. According to the best-available information from FCC sources, the first day that applicants will be able to file a vanity application without having to pay a fee is Thursday, September 3. Indeciding earlier this year to drop the regulatory fee for Amateur Radio vanity call signs and General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS) applications, the FCC said it was doing so to save money and personnel resources. The Commission asserted that it costs more of both to process the regulatory fees and issue refunds than the amount of the regulatory fee payment.
“Our costs have increased over time, and now that the costs exceed the amount of the regulatory fee, the increased relative administrative cost supports eliminating this regulatory fee category,” the FCC said in itsReport and Order, which appeared on July 21 in The Federal Register. “Once [it’s] eliminated, these licensees will no longer be financially burdened with such payments, and the Commission will no longer incur these administrative costs that exceed the fee payments.”
In 2014 the FCC raised the Amateur Service vanity call sign regulatory fee from $16.10 to its current $21.40 for the 10-year license term. The $5.30 increase was the largest such fee hike in many years. In a typical fiscal year, the FCC collected on the order of $250,000 in vanity call sign regulatory fees.
The FCC said the revenue it would otherwise have collected from such regulatory fees “will be proportionally assessed on other wireless fee categories.” Congress has mandated that the FCC collect nearly $340 million in regulatory fees from all services in fiscal year 2015.
40 meter CW with KG6WKM at the key. We scored 148 contacts for 296 points overall.
Signals were loud and band noise non existent for the entire period. Seems like a lot fewer stations on the air this year especially in the midwest, possibly due to the weather.